The Indonesian government restricted access to certain features on social media and messaging apps in the wake of violent protests in the nation’s capital.
Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Twitter were all impacted as officials moved to slow the spread of hoaxes and false news which might trigger an “emotional response” from users.
In a press release, officials said the limitations apply to the sharing of videos and images; SMS and voice features remained enabled.
Rudiantara, the country’s Minister of Communication and Information, said the bulk of negative content and hoaxes posted on social media “on Facebook, on Instagram is in the form of videos, memes or images,” adding all Indonesian users will experience a slowdown in downloading and uploading such content.
The minister explained officials opted for blanket limitations because it would be too time consuming to identify and take down troublesome accounts one at a time. He added the restrictions would be temporary, but did not say when they would be lifted.
Indonesia’s move comes after riots erupted in Jakarta following the re-election of Indonesian president Joko Widodo. Associated Press reported six people were killed today (22 May) after the situation turned violent.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back